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Visual Project Ideas for English

Instructor: Angela Janovsky

Angela has taught middle and high school English, Business English and Speech for nine years. She has a bachelor's degree in psychology and has earned her teaching license.

Developing visual projects for an English course can allow for many opportunities to display reading concepts. The following individual project ideas are appropriate for both middle and high school students.

Visual Learners

In the teaching profession, we have come to realize that students have a wide variety of learning styles. As a teacher, it is imperative to provide opportunities for every kind of learner to be able to display his or her knowledge. How else can we properly assess learning?

These project ideas focus on giving opportunities for students to show visual representations of key points from texts read in an English class. Each project combines the skills necessary for reading analysis, creativity, comprehension and oral presentation.

Character Development

Goal: Students will be able to analyze how a character develops throughout a story.

Objective: Students will create visual representations of major characters in a novel or short story at different points of time in the plot. Students will present their creations and orally explain how the character has grown/changed throughout the story.

Process: Students may choose one major character or one may be assigned to them. They must create three visuals in total: one showing that character at the beginning of the story, the middle, and at the end. Visuals could include drawings, paintings, collages, mosaics, mobiles, comic strips, or computer generated images.

Use the following guidelines:

  • Each visual must include at least five details that show a quality or trait of that character at that point in time. Those details cannot be repeated in the other two visuals.
  • Each visual must also have a quote from the text. This could be a piece of dialogue spoken by that character or another character. It could also be a cited line from the text.
  • Students will present their visuals to the class, describing the details included in each, sharing the quotes, and explaining how each quote represents the character.

This project should be used after a novel or short story has been read in its entirety. This project could take anywhere between 1-3 days to complete. Paper, crayons, markers, paint, poster board, etc. could be provided in the classroom or brought in by students.

Scrapbook

Goal: Students will be able to investigate a variety of significant aspects of a story including theme, character, conflict, setting, and plot.

Objective: Students will use a scrapbook theme to show important aspects of a story or novel.

Process: Split students into groups of 4-5. Each group will create a 10-page scrapbook centered on the story. You may have requirements for each page like one focused on theme, another for conflict, another on setting, and others for each major character. Use your discretion based on the ability levels of your students for how much guidance to require in that respect.

Example items to include in the scrapbook:

  • Short diary entry from a character
  • Love letter from another character
  • Picture of character's family
  • Trinket important to a character
  • Picture of an important aspect of the setting
  • Newspaper clipping from something that occurred in the plot
  • Invitation to an important event that occurred in the story

This project should be used after a novel or short story has been read in its entirety. Give students 3-5 days to create their scrapbook. Some images may be found online or hand drawn. Other materials for the items should be provided by the students. Poster board, crayons, markers etc. could be provided in the classroom if possible.

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